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Events and Activities

Parents and family are welcome to the campus at any time, but you’ll want to mark your calendar for the following special events we have planned for you. Events that are open to the public, including Bethel fine arts and athletics events, are also noted on our community events page and calendar.

Parents can also see photos of recent student events on the Bethel College campus and the surrounding community.

Campus Visit Days

If your child is considering a Bethel education, a campus visit is a must. Pictures can show you snapshots of Bethel College’s campus life, but they can’t give you a true feel for what it means to be a Bethel student. Experience life here the way we do. Share a meal with us in the dining hall. You’ll meet current students, professors and coaches and participate in campus activities. An admissions counselor will guide you and your child through the admission and financial aid process as well as arrange auditions and interviews for scholarships. Schedule an individual visit for a date and time that suits you best.


Parents and family members are invited to baccalaureate and commencement services to honor their special graduate. Parents of graduates receive an invitation and schedule of events by mail.

Fall Festival

For almost 40 years, Bethel College has celebrated education, diverse cultural traditions, special foods, fine arts, crafts and friendship at its annual Fall Festival, held each year on an extended weekend in late September or early October. More than 5,000 people—including students and their families, alumni and community members—come to Newton and the Bethel campus to enjoy an array of activities, including a homecoming football game and fall theater production.

All parents of current students are mailed a detailed schedule of Fall Fest early in the school year.

Grandparents Day

For more than two decades, Bethel College has celebrated the special relationship that students have with their grandparents by scheduling a Grandparents Day on campus each spring. Grandparents Day is planned and hosted by the Student Alumni Association. The day gives special recognition to grandparents and gives grandparents a glimpse of life as a Bethel student. For additional information, contact the Office of Alumni Relations at 316-284-5251 or via e-mail.

Host Family Program

Host families provide students with a home away from home. Activities might include sharing a family meal, attending a cultural or sporting event, attending picnics, observing holidays, going to movies or shopping together. Many students develop relationships with their host families that last for years after they graduate. Learn how your son or daughter can sign up to be matched with a host family or, if you live near Bethel, how you can volunteer to become a host parent.


Orientation is an important way for your child to get to know his or her peers, student life staff and Liberal Education Advisers (LEAs). Download schedule

Parents Association

The Bethel College Parents Association sponsors several events and projects throughout the year, including an annual ice cream social for students. Learn more about the association and how you can get involved.

About Bethel

As the first Mennonite college founded in North America, Bethel College celebrates a tradition of progressive Christian liberal arts education, diversity within community, and lifelong learning.